We have often studied about how pandemics have swept off thousands from the face of the Earth. Who would have thought that this world, running on innovations and technologies, would be pushed back into their houses causing complete lockdowns in countries across the globe.
Yes, coronavirus has tied everyone, from the most developed to the developing countries in its clutches.
It’s ironic how a virus has combined the first, second and third world countries into ONE WORLD, fighting and helping each other in these times.
Having originated from Wuhan in China, coronavirus has caused devastation in European countries like Italy, Spain, Germany, UK & has had worse impacts in the USA.
Whereas countries like Taiwan, South Korea have been able to flatten their curves, other countries in Asia are taking proactive measures to curb the spread of the virus.
India, the second most populous country in the world is putting in all efforts & resources to deal with COVID19. After a complete lockdown of over a month, some states in India have been able to contain the spread of the virus and even eliminate it completely by taking proactive measures.
Goa became the first COVID19 free state in India, followed by Manipur, Sikkim and other north easter states and a few other Union Territories like Daman & Diu, Adaman & Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep. As coronavirus cases started spreading across India, few states were quick enough to impose safety measures and lockdowns much before the centre announced a nationwide lockdown.
The first case in India arrived in Kerala.
And that was it! Kerala started thermal screening of all incoming passengers. The state’s response system and agility in fighting covid derives it’s previous experience of managing the Nipah outbreak and devastating floods. A fastrack surveillance system of all passengers who had arrived from abroad was put in place. The root maps of where they went, who they interacted with was made available to the public to help in identification. The vulnerable & high risk populations are being tested thoroughly.
As Odisha is highly vulnerable to cyclones, the state has built over the last several years a very STRONG EMERGENCY RESPONSE SYSTEM. The state machinery is trained well in handling emergencies. Empowerment of citizens by advancing payments for social security schemes, timely sanction of financial aid for setting up infrastructure such as hospitals etc. has been the top priority of the state.
Apart from that, sealing of borders between states has been significant in containing community spread of the infection.
The government’s ‘Make In India’ is being seen as a new normal model for the country. Vitally important supplies to combat Covid-19 were made available as a testament to the potential of Make in India. Out of the required 75,000 ventilators, 60,000 are being manufactured in India only. Out of a total requirement of over 20 million PPEs, 35 domestic manufacturers have stepped up to fulfil the demand, supplying 13 million PPEs.
The government is providing aid to financially weaker sections of the society through its existing schemes. Special modes of transport have been arranged for migrant labourers to safely reach home from other states where they had been working before the outbreak of Coronavirus.
The government along with the private sector is transferring essentials, food items, medical equipment, PPE, etc through ‘Lifeline UDAN’, an initiative under the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Tones of material are transferred to and from various states everyday via aeroplanes.
Railway coaches, vacant government built houses and other spaces have been converted into quarantine centres to cover up any shortages for the future.
All Smart Cities have converted their Command and Control Centres into ‘COVID19 War Rooms’ for strict surveillance, public announcements. Cities have also developed their own apps to track movement of people under mandatory quarantine. Innovative ways of fumigating vast areas across cities are being deployed.
The civil society, NGOs, SHGs have all come together to help the poor & vulnerable groups in all states. Special guidelines have been drawn up for businesses and offices that are compulsorily working even during the lockdown.
India is not only taking several measures to combat the spread of coronavirus in the country, it is also helping the global world by supplying hydroxychloroquine, an antimalarial drug to several countries. After 40 days of lockdown, the country has been divided into Green, Orange and Red zones (green being the safest) for activities to gradually open up for people to start earning their daily bread while observing safety and social distancing measures.
The recovery rate in India is increasing every day.
With restrictions and penalties in order, & volunteers, civil society members and local administration on one platform, India is emerging as a model in combating the virus in its own way.